Fruit Of The Tune

How offspring of famous people are starting rap careers.

By Colin Peters

“Oh it was a hustle for real player, after I turned down my full ride to Duke, I made my dad cash out his IRA so he could fund my dream. I fuckin’ hustle: money in, money out… of my dad’s IRA.” – Dom Mazzetti

None of these musicians had to cash out any IRA’s, but I think it’s fair to say that none of their careers required much “hustle,” either. Rather, these guys relied on some serious connections that already have it made due to their respectable and influential

Remember the Wallfowers? Certainly not the biggest band of the 90’s, but they were pretty good and certainly had a fair share of radio play. It’s no secret that lead singer Jakob Dylan is the son of Bob Dylan. However, the second Dylan came into his own with a band that was successful without his name on a marquee. They were actually pretty good. Fair enough. Recently, I saw this little tease pop up somewhere on the Internet: “Dylan says his grandfather was ‘the Jay-Z of his time.’” Hold the phone. What? Was there a Dylan before Bob? Nay, there is a Dylan after Jakob and his name is Pablo. He is a rapper.

First things first, Bob Dylan can’t be the Jay-Z of his time. It simply doesn’t make sense. Jay-Z could possibly be the Bob Dylan of his time, though I’d disagree, but it can’t be the other way around. Bob came first. Either way, Bob Dylan’s grandson is a rapper. Fortunately, we’re talking about a 16 year-old kid whose twitter feed consists mostly of conversations with his girlfriend. Unfortunately, we’re also talking about a 16 year-old kid with a mixtape under his belt and Rolling Stone coverage. Yikes. He’s not horrible, but he wouldn’t be interesting if he were anyone else’s grandson. I’m almost certain that any coverage you’ll find will mention if not headline the fact that he’s Bob Dylan’s grandson. For the record, Pablo is not Jakob’s son, rather the son of Bob’s eldest, Jesse Dylan.

Quite like young Pablo, you’d be hard pressed to find an article about Rich Hil that doesn’t mention his father. I’ll give the guy credit- at least he shortened his last name so as to not directly affiliate himself with his famous dad. However, he’s still barking up the same tree as Dylan. He might look thuggish with all those tattoos and his nasty-ass haircut, but it’s hard to be hard when you’re from Greenwich, Connecticut.  Apparently, Rich Hil just signed a record deal with Warner but who knows how far that will take him. After all, he’s still on probation after a drug-dealing bust last year, which means either one of two things:

1. He’s dumb as rocks.
2. He’s brilliant. Selling drugs and starting a hip-hop career is a great way to distance himself from his designer father- Tommy HILfiger.

Lastly, and certainly least, is Chet Haze. Again, I’ll give him just a hint of credit because he changed his last name. Still, it’s hard to accept Beverly Hills-hood rap. Chet’s real name is Chester and his real last name is Hanks. Chester Hanks- son of TomHanks. He attends Northwestern University and presumably had a privileged upbringing. Chet launched himself with a remix of Wiz Khalifa’s “Black and Yellow” that was aptly titled “White and Purple” to fit his school colors. How clever. Search for “White and Purple” on YouTube and you’ll see that Chester’s video has roughly 115,000 views. It also has more dislikes than likes. How sad. You may also notice that it was uploaded roughly 8 months ago, January of 2011. If you search for the video title and not Chet Haze specifally, you might also notice that there is a video called “White and Purple” that was uploaded in November of 2010 that also remixes “Black and Yellow.” This particular video was made by students at University of Western Ontario. Not only were they first, they also have a well-produced video to accompany the song. Oh yeah, they also have roughly 175,000 more views than our dear Chet; and this is a group that made the video for fun and school pride, not a career move.

I’m not sure how to wrap this up, so I’ll leave you with a quote by writer Sean O’Neal. “As with blues and rock ’n’ roll before it, hip-hop has increasingly become the preferred artistic expression of privileged white people, particularly those who hail from celebrity backgrounds, and thus already have the sort of wealth and fame—and thus, the “haters”—so crucial to formulating effective rap lyrics.”

Unfortunately, in my opinion, none of the aforementioned “artists” have any effective lyrics; but I guess that’s the point. Best of luck to Pablo, Rich and Chet; but Bob, Tommy and Tom are way more talented and way cooler…and one of those dudes is a fashion designer. If you’re a rapper unsuccessfully competing with a designer, it’s time to step up your game or find a new game. I’m no expert, but if I were you, I’d find a new game.


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